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6 Fun Facts about the Fourth Of July

On July 4th, 1776, known as the Fourth of July and Independence Day, the 13 colonies of North America decided to wave their hats to British rule, and declared their independence. The United States of America was born!

To celebrate America’s birthday, here are a few fun facts you may not have known about the 4th of July and American history:

Some people think that the nation’s birth should be celebrated on July 2nd. This is the date the Congress actually voted on the declaration of Independence. It’s on this day they designated Thomas Jefferson to draft the declaration. The document wasn’t reviewed, completed, printed and signed until the 4th.

Why do Americans celebrate the 4th of July with parades, fireworks and barbecues? Many believe that if has to do with a letter John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail on July 2nd, 1776 about America’s independence. He wrote « The day will be most memorable in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, bonfire and illuminations (fireworks) from one end of the continent to the other, from this time forward and forever more. »

4th of July is the biggest hot dog holiday of the year. During the weekend, an estimated of 155 million hot dogs will be consumed!

3 Presidents, among the nation founding fathers, died on Independence Day. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died hours apart on July 4th, 1826. James Monroe also died on July 4th, 1831.

Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national animal of the US. He wrote to his daughter, Sarah Bache, that he is a « respectable » bird, « true original Native of America, » and that « he is besides, though a little vain and silly, a Bird of Courage, and would not hesitate to attack a Grenadier of the British Guards who should presume to invite his Farm Yard with a red coat on. » But he was out voted and the bald eagle became the national animal.

July 4th was not declared a national holiday until 1941. Even though the anniversary of the Declaration of Independence has been declared since 1777. This day wasn’t referred as Independence Day until 1791.

Happy 4th of July!